World leaders have joined President Joe Biden in a Digital climate summit to share their stories about how nations can break free of climate-damaging fossil fuels
WASHINGTON -- World leaders united President Joe Biden at the virtual climate summit Friday to discuss their tales how nations can break free of climate-damaging fossil fuels -- by Kenyans leapfrogging from kerosene lamps to geothermal power and Israeli start-ups scrambling to enhance battery storage.
"We cannot win this struggle against climate change unless we proceed globally to fight it together," declared President Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta of Kenya.
He spoke as the White House committed the second and final day of Biden's 40-leader summit to arguing for massive investment now to switch the USA and the rest of the planet to cleaner and more prosperous economies for the long term.
Compared with the United States and other wealthy however carbon-dependent nations, Kenya stands out as a weaker country closing the tech gap despite limited financial resources. It has moved within decades from dirty-burning coal, kerosene and wood fires to become a leading user and manufacturer of renewable energy, wind and solar power.
Biden has used the virtual summit -- plagued with intermittent electronic echoes and other glitches -- to showcase the U.S. return to international climate efforts after President Donald Trump's resolute withdrawal from the mission.
The coronavirus pandemic forced the summit to its virtual format, with Cabinet secretaries stepping in as emcees to maintain the livestreamed activity moving.
Biden also used the summit to create the situation for his $2.3 trillion proposal to scrap crumbling U.S. infrastructure and reconstruct with efficient, climate-friendly transportation systems, electrical grids and buildings.
"That is a time for each of us to construct much better savings for our kids, our grandchildren," Biden said Friday, standing at a lectern at the White House and facing a Zoom-style display of hearing leaders from around the world.
"We must ensure that employees who thrived in yesterday and today's businesses have as bright a tomorrow at the new sectors, Biden said.
While technological development and wider usage has helped create solar and wind energy strongly competitive against coal and natural gas at the U.S., Biden said investment too would bring forward flourishing, clean-energy areas"in matters we haven't even thought of so far."
It's all in support of a debate U.S. officials say will make or break Biden's climate vision: Pouring trillions of bucks into clean-energy technology, research and infrastructure will rate a competitive U.S. economy to the future and create jobs, while saving Earth.
Republicans are sticking to the arguments that Trump made in yanking the U.S. out of the 2015 Paris climate accord.
It means"placing good-paying American jobs to the shredder," Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., stated on the Senate floor Thursday in a speech where he dismissed the government's strategies as expensive and inefficient.
Much of the proposed spending to address climate change is included in Biden's infrastructure bill, which could pay for new streets, secure bridges and reliable public transit, while boosting electric vehicles, clean drinking water and investments in clean energy such as solar and wind power.
Biden's strategy faces a steep street in the closely divided Senate, where Republicans headed by McConnell have objected strongly to the idea of paying much of it with tax increases on corporations.
The White House says administration officials will continue to reach out to Republicans and will remind them that the proposal's thoughts are widely popular with Americans of all political persuasions.
"We can not beat climate change without a historic amount of new investment," Bloomberg explained.
"We must do more, quicker to reduce emissions," said Bloomberg, who's contributed millions to market replacing dirty-burning coal-fired energy plants with increasingly renewable energy.
Biden envoy John Kerry emphasized the political selling point that the president call for retrofitting creaky U.S. infrastructure to operate more cleanly would place the U.S. to a better economic footing longterm. "No one is being asked for a forfeit," Kerry explained. "This is a chance."
Presidents and prime ministers from around the globe united in to explain their particular obligations and investments to split away from reliance on climate-damaging petroleum and coal.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu explained scientists in hundreds of Israeli start-ups working hard to enhance crucial battery storage for solar energy, wind and other renewable energy.
Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen revived Denmark's pledge to stop oil and gas exploration in the North Sea, switching from overseas oil and gas rigs to wind farms.
On the summit's opening day Thursday, Biden pledged the U.S. will reduce fossil fuel emissions up to 52 percent by 2030.
Biden's new target sets the United States one of the most ambitious countries in curbing climate change, the Rhodium Group, an independent research firm, declared overnight.
Different nations use different base years for their emission cuts so comparisons are hard and may look different based on baseline years. The Rhodium Group stated using the U.S.-preferred 2005 baseline, America is supporting the United Kingdom but directly with the European Union. It's ahead of a second tier of countries that have Canada, Japan, Iceland and Norway.